Wednesday Walks

To: COG List <>, COG Wednesday Walkers <>, gang-gang <>
Subject: Wednesday Walks
From: Martin Butterfield <>
Date: Wed, 19 Sep 2018 04:53:06 +0000
The editors of Gang-gang may wish to use what follows as the trip report.

16 members (I don’t think there were any guests) gathered at the foot of Red Hill for a lap of the Western element of Red Hill Nature Reserve.  The day was quite warm but a vigorous wind was blowing.

We followed pretty much the traditional route for exploring this area but birds were very hard to find.  Song was almost entirely absent.  We thought this could be due to a number of factors including:

·         The wind causing birds to seek shelter;

·         Overgrazing by kangaroos resulting in there being little shelter to be had due to lack of understorey; and

·         The presence of quite a lot of Noisy Miners – whose presence may be explained  by the lack of understory.

The greatest diversity of birds was a in a small copse of mixed shrubs on the top of the ridge.  This included a Speckled Warbler; several Silvereyes; 2 Spotted Pardalotes excavating nest tunnels; a Grey Shrikethrush and 2 White-browed Scrubwrens.  All of these were additions to our trip list.

In addition to the Spotted Pardalotes breeding activities were mainly displayed by larger birds: female Australian Wood Duck visiting probable nest site;  Sulphur-crested Cockatoo (ditto); and Crimson Rosella coming from a nest box and interpreted as occupied nest.

Surprisingly missing in action were thornbills (0 of 5 possible species seen); Cuckoos (none seen although 5 species have been reported around the broader area) and smaller Honeyeaters.  In total we recorded 28 species shown in this eBird Checklist

The editors of Gang-gang may wish to include the following in the Forthcoming Field Trips section
The October Wednesday Walk on 17 October will be to Googong Dam.  Details are on the COG website.
I have included a few photographs and some additional comments in a blogpost.

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